MOSCOW, January 26. /TASS/. Russia’s team of cosmonauts should include women since they are able to complete the same tasks as men in outer space, Deputy of the State Duma (lower house of parliament), Russian cosmonaut, the Hero of the Russian Federation, Yelena Serova told TASS.
"The Russian team of cosmonauts should necessarily include women. We should not set any quota on the number of men or women in the team, that would have been unprofessional. I doubt that there are no women in our country able to fulfill the same tasks in outer space as men," Serova, who made a six-month flight into space in 2014-2015, said.
Earlier a source in the rocket and space industry told TASS that Russia’s state-run space corporation Roscosmos would put together a team of female cosmonauts to conduct flights into outer space, and a search for candidates will be launched among space experts.
According to Serova, Russia was among the first countries to allow women study and work alongside men. "In many professions, sometimes predominantly male ones, women have proved to be top-ranked specialists, talented employees, responsible and thorough frontline workers. I have always said and will repeat that our country can only achieve prominent results in absolutely any field in a coherent union of men and women," she emphasized.
The deputy added that requirements to female cosmonauts in future teams would be similar to those to other candidates. "No more and no less. All candidates should be on an equal footing," she stressed.
Women did not join the new space crew, which was formed in summer 2018. Some specialists later attributed this to a specific national mindset and far less women aspiring to become cosmonauts. Any Russian citizen not older than 35 years with a higher education in engineering, or in the scientific and flight sectors and with work experience was able to toss their hat into the ring, but only male candidates were selected.
Only four women have traveled into orbit in the history of Soviet and Russian space exploration: Valentina Tereshnkova, Svetlana Savitskaya, Yelena Kondakova and Yelena Serova. Meanwhile, NASA has sent 47 women into space.